Safety on the roads

School starts Friday in Union County schools and next Monday in the New Albany schools, which means it’s time for all of us to slow down and start paying closer attention to our driving.

Many drivers speed in residential areas, often driving 35 to 45 miles per hour in areas where the maximum safe speed is 25. And increasingly, we see drivers who are texting while driving, an unsafe practice at any speed.

Speeding is a particular problem on roads bordering our Union County Schools and also on Highway 15 near New Albany High School. Fortunately, the New Albany elementary and middle schools are located in areas where speeding immediately adjacent to the school is not much of a problem.

We need a strong speed enforcement program, not only near our schools, but also in residential subdivision areas, to get everyone slowed down before we have a fatal accident.

Inexperience also is an issue as we will have lots of teenage drivers, many driving to school for the first time. We all need to do our part to help prevent accidents.

At this time of year, we also need a reminder about stopped school buses. It is unlawful to pass a stopped school bus from either direction while the bus has its red lights flashing.

This is a particular problem in rural areas where children often have to cross a busy highway after getting off the bus.

All of us have a role in making sure our children have a safe year on their way to and from school.